Apparently all of my long writing projects must start like this:
- Layla has an idea for a novel/novella, figures out how it should begin, and starts eagerly writing.
- Layla writes like a possessed monkey for 10K words or so, in the process figuring out who the characters are, and what the plot is …
- … specifically, that the plot is not actually the story she’s writing, but a completely different story.
IT NEVER FAILS. I have come to conclude that this is just part of my process. I have to write that failtastic first 10-20K dead end in order to get enough of a feeling for the characters and their world to figure out what their story actually is.
Perhaps this is the step that, in a more disciplined writer, would be substituted for by this “outline” thing I’ve heard about.
Ideally, I then go ahead and start over, writing the rest of the novel. This is still the hard part.
Also, no one has actually asked about my name yet, but in case people are confused by my blog name vs. my comment name … Layla M. Wier is the pseudonym that I use for my romance stuff, not so much to hide it (I wrote quasi-bestiality erotica under my real name; I have little shame to speak of) but to separate the streams somewhat as a marketing thing: Ms. Wier writes romance, Ms. Lawlor writes sci-fi and fantasy. However, my wordpress identity is Layla Lawlor because I use it to comment in a bunch of places and that is still my main author identity/name-everyone-knows-me-as. Unfortunately it doesn’t seem possible to comment as Layla Wier in some places and Lawlor in others. So you can call me either one; I’m fine with whatever.